Orioles executive vice president Jim Beattie indicated yesterday that the club wanted to make a decision on David Segui's status no later than tomorrow.
If Segui gets a vote, he'll return to the lineup soon.
Segui hasn't played since straining his right hamstring during Thursday's game in Cleveland. He jogged through the clubhouse, bat in hand, while heading to the indoor cage yesterday, and hoped to do some light running later in the afternoon.
When Segui noticed a group of reporters watching him, he pretended to reinjure the leg. The Orioles don't want to come any closer to witnessing a setback.
"It's getting considerably better every day. I'm definitely encouraged," said Segui, who's hitting .441 in 10 games. "As soon as the running feels fine, I'm playing - unless they have other ideas."
Segui left open the possibility that he could return within the next few days. "I don't think there's any way I could play tomorrow," he said.
If the Orioles place Segui on the disabled list, the move would be retroactive to Friday, making him eligible to return May 3 against the Kansas City Royals at Camden Yards.
"I'm sure David's ready to go," said bench coach Sam Perlozzo. "Hopefully he's going to be OK and won't have to go on the DL. We miss his bat."
Hargrove remains away
Perlozzo remained the interim manager last night while Mike Hargrove stayed with his mother in Texas.
Rita Ann Hargrove underwent surgery Sunday night to remove her gallbladder. She was taken by helicopter to Amarillo, normally a two-hour drive from her home in Perryton.
"I talked to him around 1:30 and he said his mom was operated on," Perlozzo said. "She had a severe infection in her gallbladder. From all indications, she's doing a lot better. It's still touch-and-go, but things look pretty good. She's on the right track."
If his mother's condition continues to improve, Hargrove could rejoin the team tomorrow.
Perlozzo is 2-1 as a manager with last night's 4-0 victory.
The Orioles won Sunday's game against Tampa Bay, after losing in Toronto on July 18 while Hargrove attended the funeral of longtime Indians trainer Jimmy Warfield.
Perlozzo was a finalist for the Seattle Mariners' job that went to Bob Melvin last winter. He also interviewed with the Orioles before they hired Hargrove.
"You don't want to do it in this kind of a circumstance," he said. "You're sitting here managing Grover's team, trying to do what he wants to do. That's a little more difficult than if it was your own ballclub. I'd like to have that opportunity someday."
Catcher Brook Fordyce made his second consecutive start. Last season, he received back-to-back assignments only four times.
Fordyce has hit safely in five of his six starts, going 1-for-2 with two walks last night to lift his average to .263.
"He's done a good job," Perlozzo said. "He's working the pitchers really well and he swung the bat pretty good yesterday. I talked to Grover and asked him if it was all right if we caught Brook and he said, `Absolutely.' It was something he was thinking of doing."
Special road trip
Six members of the organization spent the afternoon at Walter Reed Army Medical Center and the National Naval Medical Center visiting servicemen and women injured in Operation Iraqi Freedom.
Fordyce, vice president of baseball operations Mike Flanagan and shortstop Jose Morban traveled to Washington. Segui, third base coach Tom Trebelhorn and bullpen coach Elrod Hendricks went to Bethesda.
Fordyce estimated that he spent about 90 minutes at Walter Reed. The Orioles dropped off jerseys and hats, and signed autographs. They also tried to find ways to express their appreciation for the sacrifices made by the soldiers.
"It's easy for us to go out in a stadium and play in front of 30,000 or 40,000," Fordyce said, "but to go over there, you might not come back home, or not come back the same way you left. ... They're keeping our country free."
Fordyce was struck by how upbeat they were despite their injuries, which included multiple bullet wounds. One soldier's leg had been amputated.
"They were smiling, thankful that we stopped by," he said. "But I said, `Really, you don't need to thank me. This is the least I can do, to come and say thank you for going over there and protecting our country.' I'm glad I went."
Trebelhorn spoke with a Marine, only eight months out of high school, who was shot eight times during an ambush.
"He took almost all the fire and the rest of his group was able to take out the opposition. Fortunately, none of the bullets hit anything besides arms and legs," Trebelhorn said. "It's amazing to see so many young kids. These were all kids."